Who Buys from a GSA Contract?

gsa work

Many contractors often inquire about the organizations that can purchase from GSA contracts. This opportunity gives them an advantage to increased acquisition speed and FAR compliance at best value prices. Many small businesses also support their socioeconomic goals with provided access to revolutionary technology and innovative solutions.

GSA demonstrated a comprehensive list of eligible GSA sources of its supplies and services. Here are some of the places that buy from a GSA Contract:

Federal Agencies

These are any establishments that are not under the executive branch but instead in the government’s legislative branch. However, this excludes the Senate, the House of Representatives, the Architect of the Capitol. For this reason, these organizations can be eligible to use GSA sources upon request.

Mixed Ownership Government Corporations

Mixed-ownership enterprises that do not include  31 U.S.C. However, § 9101(2) can be qualified for GSA goods and services.

District of Columbia

The government of the District of Columbia can utilize GSA’s supplies and services, including motor vehicles, and anything related to them.

  • Eligible non-profit organizations for individuals with a disability for use in making or providing an approved commodity or service to the government
  • State and local governments, including hospitals and educational institutions*
  • Contractors authorized under FAR 51

State and Local Governments

State and local governments, including hospitals, tribal governments, and educational institutions, can obtain commercial products and services. There are a few programs they may utilize based on 40 U.S.C. § 502. Here are some of them:

1. Cooperative Purchasing Program

This program includes products, services, and solutions that support everyday activities involving IT, security, and law enforcement. Eligible entities can buy from qualified organizations at any time, for any reason, with the funds available. Schedule 70 and Schedule 84 can make this possible.

2. Disaster Purchasing Program

This program allows goods and services under all Schedules available. It provides state and local governments to offer ample support for disaster preparation, response, and recovery. Additionally, this can also be utilized to sufficiently recover from biological, radiological, or terrorist attacks.

3. Public Health Emergencies

This program allows goods and services under all Schedules available. It can be for federal grant funds for instances of public health emergencies.

These emergencies include significant outbreaks of infectious disease or bioterrorist attacks and destruction caused by natural phenomena.

4. 1122 Program

This program allows goods and services under GSA’s AutoChoice program. The sources utilized involve equipment that supports counterdrug missions and homeland security. This program is also to support emergency response from the General Services Administration (GSA), Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), and Department of Defense (DoD). It is essential to reach out to your State Point of contact (SPOC) to qualify.

Organizations Worth Targeting

These are the three main segments worth targeting for better chances of acquiring higher revenues with your GSA Schedule. These organizations tend to take a considerable part of your customers with the most significant budgets. Most often, they also have an increased understanding when it comes to GSA purchasing. That said, here’s an overview of the customer types you can potentially have at your disposal.

Major Federal Agencies

GSA Schedules are for major federal agencies, who also happen to be most users. These are the Department of Defense (DoD) and the executive agencies such as the Department of Energy and NASA. 

DOD did retract from utilizing GSA Schedules for their IT services a few years ago. They pulled back after discovering a mistake made by their contracting officers during the auditing season. The contracting officers did not follow the appropriate protocols when issuing task orders. As a result, DOD thought that GSA Schedules become too much of a risk. Consequently, the buyers transitioned into acquiring contracts from the Defense Department.

Despite this, some buyers began to trickle back. These customers should receive accommodations to prevent the previous debacle again. It is vital to provide these buyers with some reassurance to ease their doubts and hesitations. Let them know that all the proper procedures you follow at all times.

State and Local Governments 

Here are three basic ways of how GSA Schedule contractors can successfully target state and local governments.

  1. For Group 70 IT Schedule contractors: You can target state and local governments as soon as you executed the “co-operative purchasing” modification to your contract. Another thing you can demonstrate is the clause awarded on your contract.
  2. You can sell to state and local disaster responders when you already implemented the “Disaster Recovery” modification to your contract.
  3. Apply for state-level programs to leverage your GSA pricing. These programs include the following:
  • CMAS Program (California)

The California Multiple Award Schedules (CMAS) programs provide multiple awards based on the Public Contract Code Sections 10290 et seq. and 12101.5. These Schedules go to two or more contractors that exhibited the same products or services at the same or similar prices. Contractors can receive awards from a standard bid process upon the Federal GSA schedule.

  • State Term Schedule of Ohio

Ohio state and local government can purchase goods and services from vendors like McAfee, NEC, riverbed, TANIUM, and more. Here’s a complete list of their eligible vendors.

Federal Prime Contractors

Although it has many benefits, there are also risks to selling GSA Schedules to federal prime contractors.

These risks stem from the limitations under the eligibility of federal prime contractors to be buyers. They can qualify only after obtaining an authorization from a Government Contracting Officer. This written authorization likely entails that they can directly buy goods or services to support their prime contract.

Some prime contractors are known to circumvent this to buy goods and services at a lower price. They would often tell you that they can be authorized to utilize GSA schedules without any paperwork. So, it is integral to always look for legitimate authorization before selling from them.

Otherwise, offering GSA prices to a non-eligible customer can spark the price reduction clause. When this happens to your contacts, you have no choice but to reduce costs across all federal customers. Therefore, every statement on your contracts should be plain and straightforward to avoid misinterpretation.

You can always verify their eligibility if they provide a written letter of authorization from a government contracting officer. Make sure that this letter references your GSA Schedule contract number to prevent potential risks.

Winning Contracts
in the Federal Markets

GSA Resource Pack includes two eBooks, Five Steps to Getting a GSA Contract, and winning in the Federal Market. You’ll also get a free Extended Proposal

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